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Updated: Sep 11, 2021

The Pinjrakari art, to a large extent, is similar to Khatamband, in which the ceiling is laid with small wooden plates joined together in various designs. There are more than 100different Panjrakari designs and some master craftsmen have evolved superb designs with innovation.

It is the art of cutting out wooden panels in geometric and floral patterns to allow light and air to pass through.

Gorgeous pinjrakari work to be spotted in homes, shrines,restaurants everywhere in Kashmir!

There are over 100 designs in Pinjrakari.

Pinjrakari is now a dying art. According to the Crafts Development Instituteonly 5 master craftsmen of pinjrakari left!


Pinjrakari is a craft of making screens of interwoven wooden laths forming intricate geometric patterns. Traditionally used in elements of architecture like balconies. Partitions and ventilators . These lattice patterns are based on Islamic geometry; the triangle, the square and the hexagon. The triangle symbolizes the human.

consciousness and harmony; the square represents physical expression or materiality and the hexagon the heaven. Pinjrakari today is not practiced and made the traditional way of interlocking batons. The use of glue or nails is prevalent now for its

complexity. Origins of Pinjrakari as practiced by Shah Hamadani and his disciples dating back to 1373-1476 are seen in Tral a remote village east of Awantipora.

• The construction of interlocking small pieces of wooden lathsin geometrical pattern results in a lattice.

• There are two types of joints,a halved lap with a bridle jointand a simple tenon and mortise joint. Halved lap and bridle joint is formedby making grooves in thebaton.

• These grooves vary in shape and size depending on the thickness of the batten and the type of design. It could be a rhombus, rectangle or a cube .

• The grooves from by removing the material on one side of the batten at previously fixed intervals . The groove of one batten goes into the grooves in a batten are on one side or on both sides.

• The geometry and the construction of these joints exert tensional pressure as in weaving and keep the laths in positive without the use of glues or nails . An outer frame that holds this delicate lattice also acts as the structural member for windows and other us





Four kinds of trees supply wood for this art of Pinjrakari: Kaiur or yar (Deodar, Himalayan blue pine), Budloo or Sun-Gal (Himalayan silver fir)) and Doon Hut (Walnut). The Pinjra patterns are made from a selection of traditional designs.

Craftsmen have developed a set of scales called Kannat for different patterns


• A pinjra-chan needs a good understanding and knowledge of geometry and dexterity of using tools of wood and construction methods. The construction of pinjra uses precision hand tools of fine quality

• Craftsmen have developed a set of scales called knnat for different patterns.The kannat or measurements help ease of making to cut the battens into different lengthsand sizes.

• In this way, skilled artisans can make highly complex design without necessarily understanding their underlying principles

• The use of kannat and the intrinsic nature of repeated

components make the process mechanical . These kannat’s are formulasthat were inheritedfrom one generation to the other.


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